I full filled a childhood dream of traveling to Machu Picchu –the lost city of the Incas- in Peru this past month. Yes it is a phenomenal head rush & the pictures do not do justice. You must experience it.
I took the opportunity to travel with a Tropical – Adventures & Tours (Burbank CA,) FAM trip to Lima, Cuzco, the Scared Valley & Machu Picchu. Traveling with a small group of travel agents is always fun & educational. We take in the historical sites, critique hotels & excursions while deciding which hotels & tours are worthy of our clients.
Traveling in a small group 6 – 8 people is a great way to visit Peru. Group travel affords you the luxury of a private guide & driver. This is a huge asset. Our guides were very knowledgeable & traveling by van versus a large bus was convenient.
The city of Cuzco is steeped in history that precedes the Inca civilization. At 11,000 it is one of the highest cities in the world. . Coca tea which is served as a welcome drink as you enter many hotels gives the needed lift at the high elevation & also helps with digestion. I loved coca tea and will recommend drinking it to all my future clients traveling to Peru.
I was amazed by some of the luxury hotels available to those who can afford to splurge. The Hotel Monastero by the Orient Express is a gem off the main square in Cuzco. Character abounds in this 5 star hotel built from a 300 year old monastery. Tambo Del Inca Resort & Spa in the Scared Valley (the area between Cuzco & Machu Picchu) is the place to relax & acclimate.
The Machu Picchu Sanctuary Lodge, the only hotel at Machu Picchu, is the place for the ultimate experience. My last client who stayed here told me the food was almost as good as the view.
For information & travel itineraries to Peru call Time Travels Inc. today – 651-771-5666
Andre’ Leavitt, Owner Time Travels Inc.
Why should you contact a Romance Travel Specialist at Time Travels Inc. for help with your Caribbean destination wedding or your honeymoon in Italy? After 17 years in the travel industry, the last 5 years concentrating on Romance Vacation Travel, we have a few insights that are indispensable. I took my first course toward becoming a destination wedding & honeymoon specialist 5 years ago. Now I look for opportunities to travel in search of my niche such as destination wedding seminars on the Riviera Maya & Sandal’s certification in Jamaica both of which I attended last year. Daily reading of the travel rags is also a must.
When a client calls for information on planning a destination wedding or honeymoon vacation I ask what their dream is. I then ask what their budget is. With this knowledge I can move forward.
Exceeding my client’s expectations is the goal. Finding them the best value (not necessarily the least expensive) is always the path.
If you are considering a romantic getaway please give me a call I would love to help.
Andre’ Leavitt Time Travels Inc.
Why does Riviera Maya continue to be one of the best destination wedding locations?
Cancun is easily accessible, one pays Mexico prices while honeymooning on the Caribbean Sea & the romantic all-inclusive resort options are numerous. They are all-inclusive resorts on the Riviera Maya that fit the budget of every bride.
Couples planning a destination wedding need to consider all of the above. I agree with KJ’s recent blog kjgetaways.wordpress.com on Mexico’s Karisma Resorts in particular the El Dorado Royale. The El Dorado Royale Resort & Spa is one of the top honeymoon resorts on the Riviera Maya. Couples who are seeking an elegant adult’s only all-inclusive resort for their wedding in Mexico will find no better.
One half mile of beach , ala carte gourmet restaurants with ingredients grown in their own green house, no reservations, no buffets , a full service spa, amazing landscaping, awesome accommodations and NO kids. Wow let’s go!!
Andre' Time Travels Inc.
The adults only Excellence Playa Mujeres near Cancun is a great upscale choice for couples planning a wedding in Mexico. The 450 room (all suite ) deluxe plus property has spacious rooms complete with jacuzzi’s. I especially love the Club Two Story Rooftop Terrace Ocean Front suites. Not only do the suites have amazing views they are the prefect size for an intimate wedding ceremony and or a cocktail party.
Located on a lovely white sand beach 20 minutes west of Cancun the Excellence Playa Mujeres caters to couples seeking a laid back yet classy atmosphere with lots of activities & dining options. Gourmet ala carte restaurants, seven swimming pools, a full service spa & abundant water sports make for a great honeymoon resort and one of the best locations near Cancun for a wedding in Mexico.
For help planning you destination wedding or honeymoon vacation in Mexico call us today.
Andre' Leavitt, Time Travels Inc. 651-771-5666
One of the top honeymoon destinations in the world, Maui’s alluring beaches spectacular scenery, immaculate resorts & abundant activities make it a romance mecca. If you travel to Maui between Dec & May you will witness some of the best whale watching in the world as the humpback repeats their yearly migration.
Recently, I suggested the Club level ocean front room at the Maui Hyatt Regency for a honeymoon couple seeking upscale accommodations for their Maui honeymoon getaway. The opportunity to view whales from their lanai while being pampered on club level at the Hyatt was a hit. Most couples will admit (after returning from their honeymoons) that spending the extra for an ocean front room really adds to the romance.
I agree with Scott's Blog take on the importance of travel insurance or travel protection. (The new term for the same product.) He's right to the point.
I always recomemed travel protection for a couple's honeymoon getaway. It is a faction of the cost of the honeymoon vacation. Honeymoons are a big investment. If you can not travel for what ever reason.. and I can assure that the airlines do not care..You WILL lose your money. Unfortunately life happens even to people in love.
Andre Leavitt Time Travels inc
The downturn in the US economy has not affected the destination wedding & honeymoon market. In fact it appears to be immune to the swings. Getting married in Mexico, Jamaica & the Dominican Republic are the most popular wedding destinations. This is not surprising as these are the most affordable locations with the best all-inclusive resorts for a destination wedding.
Lately I have also noticed that although honey couples are concerned about price they are equally determined to find the perfect honeymoon resort with the most value. The honeymoon vacation is shorter but couples are spending more on room upgrades & amenities for their honeymoon getaway. For example they will splurge on a club level ocean front suite with concierge service rather than a mere ocean view room. Ahh that’s what love will do.
Andre` Time Travels Inc
Couples who call seeking information on a destination wedding are sometime intimidated by the barrage of necessary questions. Once the who, what, when where & how much questions are answered I can determine the best destination wedding location for the couple. Clients sometimes have a hard time revealing their budget. What they need to realize that their budget determines their destination wedding location.
I recently talked to a couple who really have their heart set on Cabo San Lucas. I love Los Cabos especially during the winter months when the whales reside in & around the Sea of Cortes.
While a Mexico wedding is still the best bang for your buck a wedding in Cabo San Lucas will run higher than a wedding in Cancun or the Riviera Maya. One reason is that Cabo San Lucas has fewer flights & they’re more expensive. This alone can add $200 dollars to their guest’s trip. When price becomes an issue Cancun wins.
Lima, Cusco, Machu Picchu and Puno
The City of Kings, the Archaeological Capital of America and
9 Days / 8 Nights
Day 1 - Lima
Arrival in Lima, reception at the airport and transfer to selected hotel. Overnight.
Day 2 Lima – Cuzco (breakfast)
Buffet breakfast. Transfer to the airport
Departure by plane to Cuzco; arrival in Cuzco after a one hour flight.
Reception at the airport and transfer to selected hotel. Rest of the morning at leisure.
Early afternoon visit to the nearby ruins including the Sacsayhuaman Fortress, overlooking the city of Cuzco, a pre-Inca architectural masterpiece; Qenqo, a rock sanctuary whose main attraction is a monolithic altar representing a puma; the red fortress of Puca-Pucara and Tambomachay, a beautiful fountain fed by a spring forming a series of basins. Continue the tour to the city of Cuzco: the Main Square, the Cathedral and the Santo Domingo Church or Temple of the Sun or Koricancha - 4 hour excursion. Late afternoon return to the hotel. Overnight.
Day 3 - Cuzco – Urubamba Valley – Cuzco (breakfast and lunch)
Buffet breakfast at the hotel.
Full day excursion to Pisac, a typical Andean village where a market takes place (only on Sundays, Tuesdays, and Thursdays for shared services), where peasants from around the area bring down their products, as well as handicrafts . On Sundays, Mayors from all the neighboring villages dressed in their traditional costumes, attend the Catholic Mass said in their native language (quechua). Buffet lunch at a country restaurant in the valley. After lunch visit to Ollantaytambo, the only Inca town which is still inhabited and explore the ruins which tower above it. Return to Cuzco. Overnight.
Day 4 - Cuzco - Machu-Picchu (breakfast and lunch)
Buffet breakfast at the hotel.
Early transfer to the train station and departure for a tour to Machu-Picchu. Arrival in Aguas Calientes Station and bus ride up to the ruins (approx. 3 ½ hrs). Guided visit of Machu Picchu which is totally built of stone blocks, fitted with masterful precision. This fabulous city has houses, temples, warehouses, a large central square, all connected by narrow roads and steps, and is surrounded by terraces cut into the mountain side which were used for agriculture. Lunch included. Accommodation at selected hotel.
Day 5 - Machu Picchu – Cuzco (Breakfast)
Buffet breakfast at the hotel.
Morning at leisure. (Second bus and second entrance to the ruins not included).
In the afternoon return to Cuzco and transfer to selected hotel.
Day 6 - Cuzco – Puno (breakfast and lunch)
Trains only on Mon, Wed & Sat
Buffet breakfast. Transfer to the train station.
Depart from Cuzco to Puno by the new Andean Explorer Train under Orient Express Management, which features a deluxe train decorated in the 1920’s style. The train has a wagon with a bar and an observation deck from where one can enjoy the scenery as well as a restaurant. All wagons have Pullman style seats, wide aisles, catering service as well as oxygen available. The wagons are connected to each other by gangway bellows so passengers and crew can go from one another safely. The journey takes 10 hours. Upon arrival to Puno, transfer to selected hotel and accommodation. Overnight.
Departure by bus from Cuzco to Puno (7 to 8 hours), with a stop made at La Raya Pass, at 4,321 meters to visit the steaming pools of hot water nearby and visit to the ruins of Raqchi. The remains of the central high wall of the Viracocha Temple, probably the largest roofed building built by the Incas, are impressive. On either side of the high wall, great sloping roofs were supported by rows of unusual round pillars, also of masonry topped by adobe. Nearby are the remains of large living quarters and many round store-houses. The whole complex is surrounded by a large stone wall several miles long (entrances are not included). Lunch en route. Arrival in Puno in the early afternoon and transfer to selected hotel.
Day 7 - Puno (breakfast and lunch)
In the morning. departure from the hotel’s pier. A short distance by boat from Puno on Lake Titicaca, are the floating islands made of reeds, inhabited by the Uros. They live in huts built on platforms of reeds, not more than 30-40 cms/1foot thick. Short walk on the islands, then the boat trip continues as far as the island of Taquile. Members of their self supporting Aymara community receive visitors in their colorful national costume and show them around the island. Taquile is renowned for its fine, decorative weavings. Lunch included. In the afternoon return by boat to Puno and to selected hotel.
Day 8 - Puno – Juliaca – Lima (breakfast)
Transfer to the airport and on the way, guided visit to the Chullpas of Sillustani, these funerary towers date from the 13th century. The highest measures about 12 metres, superb landscapes and the view of the neighboring Umayo lake make this tour a very special experience.
Departure by plane for Lima,
Upon arrival after a 2h 30 min flight, with an intermediate stop in Arequipa, reception at the airport in Lima and transfer to selected hotel.
Day 9 - Lima – …… (breakfast)
Morning or afternoon guided visit to the Cathedral, Main Square, San Francisco Convent and its Catacombs and the residential areas of San Isidro, Miraflores, the new commercial area South of Lima, the ocean front to enjoy a beautiful view of the Pacific Ocean.
Transfer to the airport on time for your international departure flight.
The Riviera Maya, the area between Cancun &Tulum is one of the top honeymoon destinations.
White sand beaches, blue water & spectacular resorts, Mayan ruins makes it the ultimate romantic honeymoon getaway.
One of my favorite honeymoon resorts is Secrets Maroma Beach. The beach itself has been called one of the world’s best.
You will experience romance & indulgence at the adult’s only Secret Maroma beach. This 5 star luxury all-inclusive, all suite(412 ) resort rest on 500 acres of lush terrain Honeymoon couples can enjoy its 7 ala carte specialty restaurants , 24 hour room service & premium liquor. The resort has 12 small pools plus an infinity pool & a world class spa. The atmosphere is romantic & the service is friendly & attentive. Secrets Maroma Beach is also a wonderful choice for a destination wedding in Mexico.
When you arrive at this honeymoon destination you are greeted with a glass of champagne, a warm towel & a welcoming smile and it only gets better.
April 2011-package with RT airfare from MSP from $3600 per couple.